What is brand truth?
BRAND TRUTH DEFINED: You pick brand colors, chose your words wisely, define your big dream vision, set brand growth goals, figure out whom you're even talking too and then what?
Let's chat quickly about a question I get, and that is what does it mean to brand truth?
It seems like an ethereal way to talk about branding your business or building a personal brand. Right?
The critical thing to know is that we humans are the driving force of life and every component thereof. Behind every brand is a human or set of humans breathing life into it.
Let's be honest, shall we?
If stepping out to talk to people, say something, or make a bold statement on the internet makes you sweat, cringe or lose sleep, you might be swayed to shy away from your truth.
Misalignment happens when brand truth is sacrificed in your communication efforts and actions, whether it be visual, verbal, non-verbal, or experiential between what you say and what you really want to say. People can spot a fake a mile away, and if you're honest with yourself, sacrificing truth makes branding HARDER than it needs to be.
If this hits a nerve even a tiny bit, you're most likely not tapping into your personal truth 100 percent as the leader of your business brand.
So what is truth?
Truth is about beliefs. What you agree with or what you do not believe in. What you stand behind or walk away from in life.
It's about the beliefs you hold on to the ones you pick and the ones that have adopted you that perhaps you haven't let go of yet. Beliefs about what you think about the world, your business, your team, yourself, and your business.
So what is brand truth?
In the context of building a profitable brand, brand truth is about how, when, and which personal beliefs project into the essence of the brand. The beliefs that become drivers and guideposts that influence your message, how it is perceived by the intended audience.
This is why, as a brand strategist, I am always asking you fundamental questions like, "What are the values and things you want to say?" Why? Because the answer(s) brings out your personality and your edge.
"What do you believe that influences your message?" Why do I ask, because your beliefs are going to come through whether or not you intend them to, and you might be surprised how customers and fans perceive them.
"What influences the products you sell, and why do you sell them?" Why do people care about my why? They don't, but they do care about their own beliefs and associations. They want to buy into things, products, and people who believe the way they do. They want a shared sense of connection and community.
I'm not advocating that you spend limitless amounts of time figuring out your "why," nor do I support broadcasting your why like it's your brand mission. People buy because the product or service helps them, and if they like you as much as they love themselves, then they will stick around to hear more.
Will it help your brand when you go around telling people what your why is in life? Maybe, but really the secret to utilizing your "why" is grounding yourself and your brand in why you want to keep fighting for your ideas in the first place. It's the reason that keeps you going when business gets hard and tough, and you want to retreat and hide, or perhaps you start to think about going back to being an employee.
It is beneficial to know yourself, know why you want to be in this uphill pursuit of being an entrepreneur. It is guaranteed to get hard at times and challenge your mental game.
Branding from your truth helps make hard days more comfortable.
It makes me think of the famous line in the movie Cinderella Man when he is asked, "What are you fighting for?" His response is "milk." If your a parent this "why," his personal fight resonates but for others not so much. Knowing your own "why" is for you, NOT your customers.
So the better question I have for you is, which entrepreneurial truth is worth the brand fight?